Marker Stayman


Marker Stayman was concieved by Dave Marker, bridge partner extrordinaire. It was play tested in the field with Tom Dressing and after several revisions and suggested has arrived here in its final form. It uses a combination of understandings with Forcing, and Non-Forcing Stayman.

The primary difference between the usual treatment of the combination is that all game forcing single suited or two suited hands start with forcing Stayman. We treat hands that are simply going to bid game in a major or game in NT by starting with non-forcing stayman, while hands that have slam interest or values with majors can be started with forcing stayman.

With our treatment of forcing stayman, you have a difference between the auction 1N-2C-2D-3N and 1N-2D-2N-3N.

Opening Notrumps

General Style:

NV 1st and 2nd seat, and 3rd favorable show 10-13 HCP's and a balanced hand. VUL 1st and 2nd seat show 12-14 HCP's. Opener may have a 5 card major if the hand does not otherwise qualify as an opening bid. Opener could have a 5 or 6 card minor, and will not usually be 5-4.

3rd and 4th seat NT's show 14+-17 HCP's and a balanced hand. Opener may have a 5 card major generally if he also holds 3 cards in the other major, or his hand is so tenaced that 1NT opening is more descriptive and advantaged over 1NT. Currently we have no methods to discover the 5 card major suit except in game going auctions. Hands that have small doubletons will also be opened 1NT.

NT Responses: Overview

1NT There is also a brief discussion of some of the competitive agreements we have.

Non Forcing Stayman Responder will usually have an invitational hand. There are two types of strong hands responder may have:
  1. A hand with a four card major that wishes to play in 3NT or 4M if opener has a fit (there is no real reason to go through forcing stayman).
  2. A hand with a four card major that wishes to make a balanced slam try.
1NT 2C Invitational Stayman
2D Denies 4 card major
1NT 2C Invitational Stayman
2H Shows 4 or more hearts, may have spades.
1NT 2C Invitational Stayman
2S Shows 4 or more spades

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Forcing Stayman

Responder will usually have a hand that has a 5 card major that wishes to investigate possible slam, or a 5 card minor that wishes to investigate slam.

1NT 2D Game forcing stayman.
2H Four or more hearts
1NT 2D Game forcing stayman.
2S Four or more spades.
1NT 2D
2NT No four card major, No five or longer card minor. Responder is exactly 3-3-3-4 or 3-3-4-3

1NT 2D
3C - Long unknown minor. Could be 5 cards in length.

1NT 2D
3D 2-3-4-4 or 3-2-4-4

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Weak NT Transfer Responses to 1NT

The transfer responses are one of several types of hands. Opener has no choice but to accept the transfer as opener has no idea as to the type of hand responder holds.
  1. A simple preemptive call. Responder has a 6 card suit and wishes to preempt the opponents.
  2. A general slam try with scattered values. Shows only a 5 card suit. Not available in clubs.
  3. A slam try with prime controls. Opener will transfer and then cuebid an Ace. This sequence still shows at least a 6 card suit. Two suited hands are handled with Forcing Stayman.
  4. A Brozel type hand with specifically 5-5 holding in two suits. This bid will be invitational only.

Club Transfers

1NT-2NT is a transfer to clubs. It will either be a weak hand with clubs, or a Brozel invitational bid. May or may not show clubs.

1NT - 2NT
3C Manditory acceptance of transfer.

Diamond Transfers

1NT-3C is a transfer to diamonds or a Brozel shaped hand. It is used to show non-touching major-minor combinations.

3D Manditory acceptance of transfer

Heart Transfers

1NT-3D is a transfer to hearts, either weak or slamish.

1NT - 3D
3H Manditory acceptance of transfer

Spade Transfers

1NT-3H is a transfer to spades, either weak or slammish.

1NT - 3H
3S Manditory acceptance of transfer

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Minor Suit Stayman

1NT-3S is Minor Suit Stayman, that suggests that the hand be played in a minor if a fit is found, or can be played in 3NT. Subsequent bids beyond 3NT, show 5-5 minor suited hands that must be played in 5 of a minor, or 6 of a minor with less than 5-5 distribution.

3S Minor Suit Stayman

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Other NoTrump Auctions

1NT-3NT To Play
1NT-4C Regular Gerber.
1NT-4D Texas Transfer to spades.
1NT-4H Texas Transfer to hearts.
1NT-4NT Quantitative (20-21 HCP's)
1NT-5NT Quantitative (22-23 HCP's) and forces 6NT invites 7NT.

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Weak NT Competitive Auctions

Simple Runouts

Systems which use pass forces redouble with both strong and weak hands have a major weakness in that opener may not venture a penalty double on an auction that begins 1NT-Pass-2X since responder may have absolutely nothing. Another difficulty is that sometimes the best contract is 1NT-Dbl and this can not be reached. The follwing system is very simple.

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